Elder Roberts – First week in Mission Field – August 25, 2014

Hi All,

Wow, okay, I have SOO MUCH to say in this email. I’m going to do my best.

So I met the mission president!! I love that man so much. We are going to have an awesome two years. He’s really relaxed in his manner but you can tell he’s a really hard worker. Now that I vocalized that thought, he’s a lot like dad. So perfect!! We stayed in the mission office for a night when we first got here. We actually went out and followed up on some appointments with the elders who were assigned there. It was me, Elder F. (going home in 2 months) and another latino elder named Elder C. He’s new like me. We taught a lesson to this lady named Hermana Z and they described baptism to her while I smiled because I can’t speak spanish that well. Then they stopped talking and looked at me. Uh oh! My turn to talk. Soo…I just challenged her to be baptized!! I memorized how to do that in spanish and she accepted! They set a date and it was incredible. She said the closing prayer and the spirit was so strong. There’s nothing better than the prayer of an investigator. The next day we went over health stuff and then met our companions! My new companion is named Elder R. And guess what? HES TALLER THAN ME!! And he’s from Tijuana! This dude is like 6 foot 6. He’s 1 meter and 97cm, if you want to convert that. Thats what he said to an investigator. They asked me how tall I was and I said 1 meter 94cm…who knows. I just based that off his height hahaha. Anyway he’s really quirky like me and he’s absolutely hilarious. He doesn’t speak a ton of english but when he does he actually has great syntax…just the accent needs work. But its so funny when he says things because he knows a lot of slang words…and those coupled with his accent are priceless. I guess he learned a lot of slang english from his previous companions. He’s been out for 7 months. He doesn’t play any specific sports but he’s generally athletic. Very hard worker. Very humble. Fantastic missionary. I’m off to a good start.

Okay heres the run down of whats going on:

Zone: Las Tuxtlas Norte

Area: Lerdos 2

City/town/pueblo: Cabada

Okay and here’s another thing. I guess there haven’t been Elders in Cabada for 6 weeks. And this has caused a lot of problems for us for a few reasons.

1. We had to live with our District Leader Elder C and his new gringo trainee (like me) Elder R. They are both really, really funny. Elder C has been out for 3 months and has had considerable success. He’s one of those leaders who calls us every night for our daily numbers…even though you’re supposed to call every week. But I’m fine with that, because he calculates our week totals for us.

2. Our little casa didn’t have any light when we first arrived. That’s why we lived with Elder C and Elder R.  Also, the missionaries who lived in our casita before us LEFT THE WINDOWS OPEN. Why is that significant? When we stepped into that house, it was a war zone. There were many, many creatures who made a home there. Also everything was incredibly dirty. It’s a little 2 room house with a front room/kitchen, a bedroom and a bathroom. The shower is frigidly cold, but that doesn’t matter because its so hot here. Also I broke our toilet when I tried to flush it. But its okay, we have a system now. So the shower drain doesn’t work too well, so when we shower the ground accumulates water. We take this water and put it into a bucket, and when we are done going to the bathroom we flood the toilet bowl with water and the toilet somehow flushes!! So everyones happy. Our house was seriously ridiculous when we first got there. I call this the War of Worlds. Us against nature. There was a fat lizard chilling on the wall. Naturally Elder R and I start chasing it. It runs behind a poster that the previous elders left, and Elder R starts pounding the poster trying to kill the lizard, next thing you know I hear a squish and Elder Rodriguez goes “Oh..” and the little lizard was dead. As we started rummaging through what the other elders left, Elder R lets out this really loud squeal because there was a spider the size of my palm on the wall behind the cabinet. He looks over at me, and in his really thick accent says “It’s your turn to kill”. hahaha I’m laughing right now as I type this. I was on the ground laughing. Finally I got ahold of myself and smashed that sucker with my shoe. There was also two cockroaches in our shower, and two in our fridge. I went to kill one of the shower cockroaches and it jumped on me. Scared the tar out of me. But eventually I took care of them. Then the next morning there was a lizard in my garment drawer. I got him out, but he’s still somewhere in our casa. I bought a big bottle of bug kill spray today at the store. Best purchase I’ve ever made. I went to town with that thing today. We cleaned our house like crazy and now its quite quaint.

Here in Cabada, there are no crazy buses with people hanging out the sides, unfortunately, and no little kids in the street to give candy to. So I took the liberty of eating all the candy Leslie bought me. Thanks Leslie it was delicious!

We walk SOOO much and Elder R walks SOO fast!! I am out of breath at every appointment and obviously sweating profusely. But everyone else is too, so thats okay. Also at the mission office they gave us these bottles that have a fantastic filter. I use it for the tap water here and it works perfectly! My little gringito estomago is totally fine!! Thus far…

Also, because there were no elders here for 6 weeks we have nothing really to go off of. We contacted sooo many people this week. And it’s awesome because 98 percent of the people invite us into their homes for a lesson. Rich or poor, male or female, you name it. We got a lesson. The problem is when we make an appointment we cannot find their house. None of the streets are marked and not a lot of people know any street names except their own. We have 9 investigators, 8 of which are currently progressing. The lessons are awesome. All I generally do is find scriptures, read them, bear testimony, and ask some questions. Elder R does the mayoria of the explanations. We had dinner with this family, and the little girl said she was learning English and I was like “Oh cool! How are you?” in english and I was a little taken a back because I sound weird when I speak English. I wasn’t really used to it. The people here talk so fast. I can understand the general idea or problem that they are talking about usually but the specific details…not a chance. Especially when the people here drop the last letter of a word because of the Veracruz accent. Its tough to understand.

Church on Sunday was the absolute best. So many funny things happened. Okay. So we all get up to introduce ourselves because we are new missionaries. I couldn’t think of the word “to perform” because I bore my testimony on the Atonement, so I was just like “performar”. Hope that was the right word. But after we were done bearing testimony, some random dude got up and bore his testimony too. He wasn’t even in the program, just stood up and started talking. Right on dude! Way to be! Also, I have never in my life heard such horrible singing. I know I always joked about how I was a good singer when I was home, trust me I know I’m not very good. But believe me when I say that I was, without a question, the best singer in the ward. Also the piano player played the hymns in the wrong key. Maybe that’s what was throwing everyone off? I rode in the back of Hermano J van with Elder R and a family of 10 to church. That was a fantastic and very sweaty experience. Also the lady leading the hymns was waving her hand in the air sooo fast! She managed to make about 4 or 5 extravagant hand gestures for every beat or two of the song. She was very nimble for a woman of 60. But, its a very strong little ward. Everyone is very aware of and supportive of us missionaries, because the majority of the adults are converts. Its a great atmosphere.

Oh I forgot!  You know that little motorbike that nacho libre has in the movie with the basket in front? Everyone has those down here!

Man I love this work!! Im studying the vision of the tree of life this week. It’s interesting to me how the river is “near” the iron rod. Sin and temptation are not far away. Are you “clinging” to the rod? Holding? Touching? Check yourself. Because temptation is near us! Don’t fall into that river! Love you guys. Keep on keeping on! Know that I’m fine. My inner hunter has been prominent this week because of the War in our casa.

Love you all. Miss you all!

Elder Roberts

PS Thank you Ocean Goddess for the package. And I recieved Josie Moms letter and Jessie’s letter!



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